Every year around this time we’re all starting on our holiday gift list. We’re trying to find that gift that means something to someone; we want to make sure it’s something they’ll like and that it’s special. A great way to make sure you find something special for everyone is to shop with a company that offers the policy of “buy one, give one.” Many companies have this great way of giving back when you purchase a gift; they give the same or equal value back to a community in need.
Below are 10 companies that you can shop with this season to make every gift count:
Toms is a company I’ve known about for years. When I was first introduced to the company, for every pair of shoes that you purchased, they gave a pair of shoes to a child in need. Now, they sell eyewear and other products that when purchased provide sight-saving surgeries, prescription glasses, clean and safe water, and even safe births. They also provide training for communities to help boost their economy by teaching them the skills to make a difference on their own. Not to mention, the product you take home is great. You can find Toms in stores like Macy’s, Nordstrom, or even Wholefoods. You can also find them online!
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Warby Parker –
Warby Parker offers a unique eyewear purchasing experience, as well as affordable pricing for stylish eyewear. For every pair of glasses purchased, they donate a pair to someone in need. They also provide men and women in developing countries with training to give eye exams and sell eyewear within their communities. By allowing communities to buy and sell the donated glasses, these communities and their economies thrive independently. Browse Warby Parker today
Project 7 –
Project 7 makes specialty candy, mints, and gum. All products are made in America, but every purchase gives back to the world. Each product and purchase has a corresponding area of need in which the company donates. These areas of need are defined as: Save the Earth, House the Homeless, Feed the Hungry, Quench the Thirsty, Heal the Sick, Teach them Well, and Hope for Peace. The company works with non-profit organizations and works to make a difference for each area by planting trees, delivering life-saving treatments, providing clean drinking water, and so much more. You buy Project 7 treats in stores like Target or online.
Pronounced “You-be,” is a company helping provide classrooms with the tools they need to learn and progress. For every purchase made, a Yoobi Classroom Pack is donated to a classroom in need across America. This program not only helps students but it also takes a worry off teachers who often provide these school supplies when students can’t afford them. Yoobi works with the Kids in Need Foundation to provide supplies all over the country. Find Yoobi products on their website.
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Hand in Hand –
Hand in Hand Sustainable Suds is a soap company that for every product purchased, they donate one bar of soap and one month of clean water to a child in need. They’ve donated over 350,000 bars of soap to children, now mostly in Haiti – helping to prevent deaths by water-related illnesses. More recently, they’ve launched a clean water program by building and repairing wells that provides thousands of people and families with clean water. All of this started with selling soap! You can find these products at your local Target or purchase them online.
Faucet Face –
Faucet Face (I love their name!) is a company that sells glass water bottles. For each water bottle sold, 100 liters (minimum) of clean water is provided for families in India. The way they do this is with a BioSand Filter, an inexpensive way to filter water for families without plumbing in rural India. With their program 1 for 100 they donate 2.5% of all sales plus a complete filter for every sale of 5 or more water bottles. The charity they work with – Third Millennium Awakening also employs locals to build and distribute the filters. You can buy your water bottles here.
Twice as Warm –
Twice as Warm is a winter clothing company that provides their same high-quality, American Made, winter-wear to local shelters and organizations in need. The company sells hats, gloves, and scarves. With each purchase, one product goes to someone in need, not just locally but around the world as well. Find their products here.
Panda makes the world’s most sustainable sunglasses. Their sunglasses and watches are made from premium eco-friendly bamboo. The best part is that for each pair of sunglasses sold, they give a pair of prescription glasses and provide a medical eye exam to someone in need. They also build optometry schools, as well as train individuals to become optometrists, and they also make watches. Every time a watch is purchased, Panda works with Pencils for Promise to provide education and opportunities to children. Pencils for Promise builds schools, helps teachers, offers student scholarships, and provides water and health care programs. All of this comes from buying a watch! Find their sunglasses and watches here – Panda
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Smile Squared –
Smile squared is a company that for every toothbrush purchased, a toothbrush is donated to a child in need around the world, as well as in the United States. They’re partnered with over 20 nonprofit organizations to help distribute the donated toothbrushes. Smile Squared also sells travel products such as small travel pouches and travel journals. When purchased, these items help to fund wish trips for children facing life-threatening conditions. You can find their products here.
Related: Holiday Spending Sanity
BOGO Bowl –
This list would not be complete without a company that gives back to animals. BOGO Bowl simply means buy one bag of dog food and give one bag of dog food. The company works with shelters and rescues, foster-based programs, and pet pantries. They also work with these organizations by redirecting money otherwise spent on dog food to also help with medical expenses, facility improvements, marketing, and other ways to help them take care of and adopt the animals. This is such an amazing company because if you’re a pet owner, you’re going to buy food for them anyway – why not be helping other animals in need at the same time? If you’re not a pet owner, shelters and rescues are always looking for donations of food – this way, it’s double the gift. Check it out here.
Soap = Hope –
This company is a little different than the others mentioned above. I wasn’t going to mention it until I read that their mission is to invest in women and end poverty. Their business model isn’t the typical buy one, give one. It’s called the Good Returns model, and it invests every dollar of profit to an organization or institution for one year and then is returned to Soap Hope. Basically they use all their profits to invest in organizations that bolster women. They believe women are the key to ending poverty: “women save more, invest more, and are more likely to use their earnings to make sure their children are educated and to break the cycle of poverty.” It’s different but you know your money is going directly to help women with each product purchased. And you can purchase those products on their website.
From War to Peace –
This company sells jewelry, accessories, and art made from what they call Peace Bronze. It’s recycled copper from disarmed nuclear weapons systems. Not only does this company make something beautiful out of a former weapon, but they also donate a minimum of 20% of the revenues to over seven different organizations dedicated to peace and social justice. Again, this company was a little different, but when I saw the Beers not Bombs collection, I was sold on the concept. Browse and purchase their products here.
By doing the research for this post, I personally have learned so much. Reading about all the good these companies are doing for the world makes me so happy, but it also makes me appreciative of the privileges in my life. The things I take for granted like clean water or just having soap. This time of year is a time of giving but we also need to remember that people are suffering all the time, and we shouldn’t forget about them the other 10 months of the year. Remember this list when buying soap or school and office supplies. Remember this list when buying a Mother’s Day gift or a birthday gift. I certainly will.
There are definitely a lot of great companies that give back to the community and the world; I couldn’t possibly list them all here. Maybe in the future I’ll do another post about them. Let me know in the comments below what are some companies you like that give back in a great way.
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Christina is a twenty-something living with her beagle, Mash, and husband, Nate in their van. She loves traveling, shopping, art, and photography. She’s also a vegetarian, pop-culture enthusiast, book-lover, and Dave Matthews Band fanatic. Catch her somewhere around the country in a converted camper van or at home in Florida for a visit.